“Dare to love yourself”


During the “Spring Soul Bath” I co-Iead recently, I read this haiku by Aberjhani: “Dare to love yourself/ as if you were a rainbow/ with gold at both ends.” We had just bathed ourselves with the resonance of Tibetan bowls and the sun-yellow images of forsythia and daffodils, when the words of this profound truth struck the group following the striking of the tingshaw bells. What does it look like to be a rainbow with gold at both ends? What do you look like spun with color and light, a bow of promise in the world, holding a bucket of brightness and value in both of your hands? What would it look like if you loved yourself this way whenever the light struck the prism of your awareness?


“My soul and the great World are one.”


The wishes of the soul are springing,
The deeds of the will are thriving,
The fruits of life are maturing.

I feel my fate,
My fate finds me.
I feel my star,
My star finds me.
I feel my goals in life,
My goals in life are finding me.

My soul and the great World are one.

Life grows more radiant about me,
Life grows more arduous for me,
Grows more abundant within me.

-Rudolf Steiner

I lead a group of teachers a few weeks ago through a Camino Divina exercise in a lush, wet landscape at the Whidbey Institute. The air was thick with rain. When I asked pairs of folks to share with one another a line that struck them during a thrice-fold reading of the quote above, so many chose the lines “I feel my fate, My fate finds me.” Myself included. Growing up, I imagined Fate a large obsidian presence, towering over me- a block of sharp, dark importance that I couldn’t see my way through or around to get past it. Many of us realized during our conversations and our walk in the woods that day that fate may be more of a calling, a pulling towards a deep-born longing of contribution to the world, a Friend. When Fate and I find each other, though, I think I’ll ask her to trade in her “e” for an “I” and a “t”, and I’ll call her “Faith” instead. That way, when I meet her on the trail, that large obsidian presence will be formed- instead, of light.

(beautiful artwork by Andy Kehoe)

Saint Flannery

Saint Flannery. That’s how my daughter and her college mentor referred to her one day when I was delightfully listening in on their lively conversation. Sharp as a double-edged sword slicing the smallest sliver of light into the darkness with just a glimmer visible. That’s how I envision the work of Saint Flannery. She’s a good reminder to look closely at the beauty that spills out from the unseemly places. “I can, with one eye squinted, take it all as a blessing”, Miss O’Connor once said. What can you find today “with one eye squinted”? How about taking an “Adventure into the Surprising” and see what you come up with? What is now lurking in the most unexpected places? Enjoy!

The intriguing portrait shared today is by Ande Cook.

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Spring Soul Bath- offering



With Karen Calhoun and Gina Marie Mammano

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Join Energy and Sound Healing Therapy Practitioner Karen Calhoun and Poet, Author, and Spiritual Director Gina Marie Mammano for an afternoon of soul bathing in the waters of soothing sounds, guided poetic meditation, haiku, and submersion into the rich hues of the art of creating the finger labyrinth. It is an opportunity to pull away from the tumult of daily life and the stresses of our current age and spend a few hours in a sauna of self care as we move into the earth’s renewal into spring.

Registration limited to 25 people.

The Afternoon Includes:
Hand pan and singing bowl sound bath
Poetic guided meditation

Creating a finger labyrinth
Crafting a spring solace haiku
Cost: $30
Materials Fee: $10


To reserve your spaces, contact Gina Marie Mammano at this site in the comments section, and I will direct you to how to register. Hope you will join us!

The Web of Life

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February is a great month to contemplate the “web of life”. Many things are still buried in the ground, waiting for the impending “waking up” time as the ribbons and tributaries of under-life connect to one another, mostly invisible to our sight, but preparing to sprout up, spin out, weave together, and burst forth! Chief Seattle said, “Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it.” Let’s celebrate our part in the worldwide web (of life, that is) by noticing, with joyful humility, our place in the intricate weavings of it. Let’s take an “Adventure into Connectivity” this month by walking out Chief Seattle’s words. If you’d like, there’s an adventure awaiting you in chapter 11 of my book, “Camino Divina”! Enjoy

The colorful, beautiful piece on display today is by Vijay Sharon Govender.

Writing in Response to Our Times

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An Opportunity to Join Me in Port Townsend!

Writing in Response to Our Times
with Sarah Zale and Whidbey author, Gina Marie Mammano
Fridays, 1p.m. – 3 p.m.every other week (8 meeting times)
at The Writers’ Workshoppe located at 820 Water Street, Port Townsend, WA
Feb 10 & 24, March 10, 24, April 7 &21, May 5 & 19
Cost. $200.
Max. 10 participants.

Has the aftermath of the election affected you personally? Are you feeling the need to wrestle and rumble with your thoughts and emotions—as well as connect with others in reflective and transformative ways? In this writing workshop, you will explore your stories and feelings with two facilitators from eclectic backgrounds: poetry, Compassionate Listening ®, social justice theatre, meditation, and spiritual leadership. Participants will be invited to share their writing on a voluntary basis in a supportive environment; no experience is necessary. All writing styles welcome.

Sarah Zale teaches poetry and writing, social justice, and intercultural competence in Seattle. A certified facilitator of Compassionate Listening ® and facilitator of Theatre of the Oppressed and Playback, she brings the skills of deep listening and interactive theatre to her students. Sarah is a passionate believer in the power of poetry and the arts to transform and heal ourselves and the world. She has published two collections of poetry: The Art of Folding (2010), which was inspired by her travels to Israel and Palestine, and Sometimes You Do Things (2013, Aquarius Press, Living Detroit Series) which highlights the history of Detroit and celebrates its rebuilding.

Gina Marie Mammano: Inspired by the ancient spiritual practices of lectio divina and walking meditation, Gina’s book Camino Divina: Walking the Divine Way helps readers explore whole new worlds inside themselves. Gina is an award winning poet whose work has been published in journals and magazines such as the Dos Passos Review, Poetica, Pilgrimage Journal, Bearings, and Crucible. Her training as a spiritual director, work as a retreat leader, and experiences gleaned from the OpeniCng the Book of Nature program have allowed her the ability to create interactive and intuitive listening exercises both in the interior and exterior landscapes.

Are you a falcon, a storm, or a great song?

Happy birthday Rainer Maria Rilke! Among the crystal cold awakenings we experience during the birth of winter in this month of December, I love to think about Rilke’s clarity of thought in lines like this one: “I circle around God, around the primordial tower. I’ve been circling for thousands of years and I still don’t know: am I a falcon, a storm, or a great song.” I’ve pondered this line more than once before, and was even asked by one of my teachers which one I would choose. How about you? Are you a falcon, a storm, or a great song? The adventure I take with this “Saint of Centers” in my book “Camino Divina”, is one of well, centering- “into the heart of things”. I invite you to come along. Enjoy!

The encaustic painting featured today is by Caterina Martinico, an artist featured on Etsy.

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